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Pixter

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Revision as of 00:42, 18 May 2010 by Peter Huewe (Talk | contribs)

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(picture from [amazon] where you can [order] it for $79.99) Pixter.jpg

Internals.jpg

The Pixter is like a personal digital assistant (PDA) for kids. But instead of storing boring appointments and phone numbers, they get to draw, do puzzles, and learn a little, too. The Pixter is about the size of a small book, and has a pretty solid weight to it. It's made out of brightly colored and durable plastic. The main action of this toy is drawing with an attached stylus. The Color Pixter offers much better graphics then the black and white version, which comes in handy with activities like Paint-by-Numbers and Connect-the-Dots. You can draw a picture free form, or you can use one of the starter backgrounds. There are tool buttons, like on a PDA, that give you access to fun stamps, special effects, and the eraser button. You can also save your creation in the Pixter's memory. There are some boppy tunes playing along with all this creative activity, but luckily for parents, there's also a jack for headphones and a volume adjuster. The Pixter Expansion Slot on top of the Pixter accepts ROM-based expansion cards that contain additional software and games. Requires 4 'AA' batteries. (Not included.)

The LH75411 controller was developed to be a perfect fit to the Pixter's hardware and memory needs. Based on a 70-MHz ARM7TDMI core, the chip includes color LCD controller circuitry; a 10-bit, eight-channel A/D converter, an integral touchscreen controller; and the usual assortment of counter/timers, programmed I/O pins and SRAM. Pivotal to the design were the the 32 kbytes of SRAM, which make it possible to execute the Pixter's algorithms locally, and outputs that can be configured to implement a 12-bit pulse-width-modulated audio output. The addition of an inexpensive external capacitor gave the Pixter the functionality of a moderate-quality audio D/A converter.

There are several projects in the works to make an external cartridge to boot a small Embedded OS. conversaion on hacking the Pixter can be found on irc.freenode.net #pixterdev and #eLinux